'American Idol's Curtis Finch Jr.: "America is going to have a huge task ahead of them"
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/15/2013
American Idol ousted Curtis Finch Jr. during Thursday night's live results show broadcast on Fox, determining the twelfth season's Top 9 finalists.
Curtis, a 24-year-old from St. Louis, MO, became the first finalist sent home from American Idol's twelfth season after he received the fewest home viewer votes following Wednesday night's performance show, which featured the Top 10 finalists performing songs from prior American Idol winners.
Curtis' elimination became official after American Idol judges Randy Jackson, Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey, and Keith Urban announced they were not going to prevent his departure by using their one "The Judges' Save" of the season. The decision would have to be unanimous amongst the judges to utilize the special save, and in Curtis' case, the vote was not although Nicki seemingly fought for him to stay.
During a Friday conference call with reporters, Curtis talked to Reality TV World about his American Idol experience. Below is what he had to say. Check back with Reality TV World on Monday for more from his interview.
Reality TV World: You had gotten a ton of praise from the judges during the performance show on Wednesday and it seemed like the judges were shocked and surprised that you finished in last place. Were you also a little bit shocked about your elimination? Because it would certainly seem understandable if you were.
Curtis Finch Jr.: Not at all. I've always learned to expect the worst so that if the worst does happen, I don't look surprised. Because people are always watching. People are always watching how you handle things, and so, it's always my responsibility whether things work in my favor or not to remain calm and to know that I have to set the best example when eyes are on me.
Reality TV World: Did you ever find out which judges voted "no" to using their Judges' Save on you? Because Nicki definitely seemed onboard with keeping you around.
Curtis Finch Jr.: I really don't try to harp on or think about who said "no," because that was something done in the past and I can't go back and change it and anybody that's upset about it can't go back and change it. And so, I just really look towards the future and really just strive to be the best that I can be where I am now.
Reality TV World: It's completely understandable that you don't want to harp on negativity, so would you mind then sharing who said "yes" to using the Judges' Save on you?
Curtis Finch Jr.: I think it's pretty obvious that Nicki said "yes," and so you know, I really don't know. I was focusing on singing my heart out at that moment, and so whoever was saying "yes" and "no" really didn't matter, because I really feel like the fans said "yes." And as long as they said "yes," then my heart is happy.
Reality TV World: Everybody's been proclaiming this season a girl's to lose. Do you think that naturally puts the men at a disadvantage voting-wise?
Curtis Finch Jr.: Absolutely not. The talent that has been found and put in the Top 10 is very amazing, and so, America is going to have a huge task ahead of them. Because everybody there are vocal beasts.
Reality TV World: So it sounds like you think the men are capable of defeating the women, is that right? And if so, which ones in particular?
Curtis Finch Jr.: All of them. Really, you can pick one, because everyone has something that they bring to the table. And when they do that effectively, it goes through the TV and voters pick up the phone and they vote or they go on the app and they vote or they go on americanidol.com and they vote.
These contestants are very infectious because their gifts come straight from their heart and reach the heart of America's people all over the world.
Reality TV World: Last night, Jimmy Iovine had said he assumed you wouldn't make it past eighth place if you continued on the same song choice path. Had you survived another week, would you have taken Jimmy's advice into account and changed things up a little bit or would you have kept singing similar soulful, inspirational songs because they were in your comfort zone?